News The Sandman just shot to No. 1 on Netflix — and it has 85% on Rotten Tomatoes

Aug 7, 2022
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I just finished the entire first season of Sandman... And contrary to what some critics have said, that viewers require a previous knowledge of this comic's universe to get into the series, I found it immediately compelling. I am not easily drawn into series, I am not a Game of Thrones fan, and I only briefly looked into Sandman back in the early 90s. So what did I love so much about this series?

1. It caught me imaginatively first. I didn't think I would watch beyond the 1st episode. But Tom Sturridge's charaterization is phenomenal. The silences and nuances of his expression that speak pages or even chapters. Not unlike Anya Taylor-Joy's character in The Queen's Gambit.

2. This is what then caught me emotionally. I wanted to watch him as he engaged so many different stories within the story itself. Each one uniquely surprising both about him, and about the deeper ideas arising from the stories (I didn't read the comic series).

3. The main characters were so strongly developed immediately without needing a long runway in order for me to engage with them. Even the Corinthian was so compelling to someone who dislikes horror--I realized at one point that I was watching episodes waiting edgily on his deceptively benign American accent and polite charm, for the other bloody shoe to drop.

4. Gwendolyn Christie as Lucifer Morningstar the Lightbringer was spectacular. At once utterly attractive and engaging and at the same time deadly menacing. I see (her) as a character with supreme intelligence, power, and the patience of eons to enact (her) desires. The "duel" between (her) and Dream was a completely unexpected delight of logic and meaning twisted together.

5. The Convention of Collectors... truly macabre in every sense. The sadistic humor was so intentionally in bad taste as to make the scenes even more jarring and disquieting.

6. Bringing ephemeral characters like Desire, Despair and Death into a tangible film without making them 2-dimensional or, rather, making them wonderfully real... well, the actors, the make-up and effects, the mannerisms and dialogue, (and the plot of course), all serve to create a running question-and-answer-and question-again Game beneath the immediate storyline. I was totally enraptured with Desire. And welcoming of Death. Wow, Neil Gaiman!!

7. I loved the diversity of cast and the strong protagonists played by a number of amazing black actors. It was such a pleasure--more please. And the story of Robert Gadling in the midst of all the rest... so very good!

Finally, I would like to say that I not only watched the entire Season 1, I rewatched it again the next day. In the midst of a work deadline. Well done. I hope very much this Series runs to completion. I believe it can hold true to its gravitas with such excellent casting, writing, acting, effects, and production.
 
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